- I have tried to rank each position in terms of need: HIGH, MEDIUM, LOW.
- QB - I wonder a bit if Matt Flynn will draw some trade interest after his performance in New England last year. Clearly, if there is one thing McCarthy has done, he’s cemented his reputation as a stellar developer of QBs. Rodgers is off the charts but Flynn looked so good and so poised for a huge game last year, other teams have to be thinking that QBs under McCarthy’s regime may simply have a better chance of performing well in the NFL. I would still like to see us take on another young QB for development. If Rodgers stays mostly healthy, we could still develop another young guy as potential trade bait down the road. Again, with McCarthy’s QB reputation growing, this could make sense. MEDIUM-LOW
- RB - I heard “Sparky” on 1250 WSSP local sports radio the other day going on about how Ryan Grant’s days in GB are numbered. And eventually stating Grant will be released/traded, whatever – just not playing with the Pack this year. That’s ridiculous. Grant will come back and split the load with James Starks who proved he can play and play in big games. I think the team ought to consider drafting a shiftier back. I’ve been saying this for years I know, but it’s time we do it. With both Grant and Starks in the fold, we have our huge solid backs. No need for more guys of that mold. We need a fast, tough-to-get-your-hands-on dude. Brandon Jackson did a decent job as the 3rd down back, and as tempting as it will be to repeatedly say “well, it worked last year”, we have to remember that staying the same doesn’t work well in the NFL because teams figure you out. So, I’m guessing we’ll part ways with Jackson and I’m hoping we go after a shifty, fast guy who can make people miss. Ideally the guy would have good hands and be a quality blocker as well. MEDIUM-HIGH
- WR – It will be interesting to see what happens with James Jones. If he is retained, I can see sticking with the core 4 guys, but I can also see drafting for the future. Driver is getting older and had injury issues bothering him for much of last year. Jennings and Nelson are very good and young. I think we should try to keep Jones but not overpay for him. He can be very good, but he can also frustrate. Either way, I think we should be looking for a big WR who can add to the mismatches our WRs/TEs already cause. If we had a huge dude at WR on the field when Finley is on the field, it would be difficult for defenses to figure out how to match-up – especially considering they’d also have to defend the other WRs and RBs. But I would be particularly interested in a huge guy at WR to enhance our red zone scoring options. We drew up some nice plays last year to our WRs, but having a big guy in there to add to the overall repertoire of red zone plays would be helpful. Can’t resist, want a crazy thought (that essentially contradicts what I wrote above)? What about trading for the Panthers’ Steve Smith who is apparently packed and ready to go? Though he has an attitude, I think he’s at that stage in his career when he just wants to win and adding him into the mix would be crazy. MEDIUM.
- TE – With Finley and two young guys back, it’s tempting to consider this position settled. But I did not like our TE production when Finley went down. Yes, not throwing to TEs may have opened the passing game up for our WRs some, but I’m not sure how much faith Rodgers has in Crabtree and Quarless. They are young so maybe those relationships will just continue to develop. (And the good news is that these guys now have real NFL experience.) But I can see the team taking a flier on a very raw TE with huge potential upside – especially a guy most other teams may not regard highly. Kind of like the Finley scenario. We aren’t desperate for a new TE, but we could use some depth in case Finley goes down again. MEDIUM-LOW
- O-LINE – The line figured things out toward the end of last year. They are built more for pass protecting than run blocking. At the end of the year, they seemed to have a much better feel for how to best work with the mobile Rodgers behind them. And considering a few of the guys are younger like Sitton and Bulaga , it would seem there is a sound nucleus to build off of. But I remain concerned about the left side of our line in particular. Colledge remains iffy and Clifton (who was very good last year) is quite literally on his last legs. I can see the Pack focusing on drafting tackles/guards this year (right or left as Bulaga could eventually play either). I think TT believes this is an area of real need and though he claims not to draft for need, I wouldn’t be surprised to see the Pack grab 2-3 O-Linemen this year. HIGH.